As Carl Black gets the opportunity to move his family out of Chicago in hope of a better life, their arrival in Beverly Hills is timed with that city's annual purge, where all crime is legal for twelve hours.
In 1938, Walter Neff, an experienced salesman of the Pacific All Risk Insurance Co., meets the seductive wife of one of his clients, Phyllis Dietrichson, and they have an affair. Phyllis proposes to kill her husband to receive the proceeds of an accident insurance policy and Walter devises a scheme to receive twice the amount based on a double indemnity clause. When Mr. Dietrichson is found dead on a train track, the police accept the determination of accidental death. However, the insurance analyst and Walter's best friend Barton Keyes does not buy the story and suspects that Phyllis has murdered her husband with the help of another man. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
One of over 700 Paramount productions, filmed between 1929-49, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since. Its earliest documented telecast took place in Omaha 7 March 1959 on KETV (Channel 7) and its popularity on local television stations immediately began to spread like wildfire, with sponsors assuring it the best movie slots usually during rating weeks. In Milwaukee it first aired 22 April 1959 on WITI (Channel 6), in Asheville 26 April 1959 on WLOS (Channel 13), in Minneapolis 3 May 1959 on WTCN (Channel 11), in Phoenix 9 July 1959 on KVAR (Channel 12), in Grand Rapids 5 August 1959 on WOOD (Channel 8), in Los Angeles 19 September 1959 on KNXT (Channel 2), in St. Louis 26 September 1959 on KMOX (Channel 4), in Chicago 3 October 1959 on WBBM (Channel 2), in Detroit 23 October 1959 on WJBK (Channel 2), in Pittsburgh 12 November 1959 on KDKA (Channel 2), in Philadelphia 14 November 1959 on WCAU (Channel 10), in Johnstown 9 December 1959 on WJAC (Channel 6), in Seattle 11 December 1959 on KIRO (Channel 7), and in Baltimore 27 February 1960 on WBAL (Channel 11). It was first released on DVD 28 January 1998, again 28 August 2012 as part of the Universal Vault Series, again 10 November 2014 as part of Universal's Film Noir Movie Spotlight Collection, and again in Blu-Ray 26 May 2015. For over a decade, it's also enjoyed frequent airings on cable TV on Turner Classic Movies. See more »
In the first scene in which Walter first kisses Phyllis, we see a wedding ring on Walter's hand. Fred MacMurray was married and the ring was not noticed until post-production. See more »
Well, hello there, Mr. Neff.
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Opening credits are shown over a silhouette of a man on crutches, walking toward the camera. See more »
I've now seen this movie 14 times in 25 years, at all times of the year, in all moods, sober or not etc - but always at night. I recorded my copy off TV in 1987 so I can only imagine what a remaster would do for it. With an atmosphere thick enough to cut with a knife it never fails to engross and enchant me, and although it's been dated for 40 years or more still seems relevant and watchable today. TV, answer phones, recordable CD/DVD, memory sticks and the internet have all come between us and yet I can still watch Fred MacMurray speaking into a Dictaphone without a qualm. Who wears a hat in California nowadays? Who buys beer whilst driving! Lift attendants have gone but I can still believe in Charlie working and laughing away in the garage past 11 at night.
Woman and man agree to murder woman's husband but on the way to the cemetery they face grilling by insurance company. I think everything has been said before on the IMDb - by those who think it's one of the best films ever made! To those who simply think the main problem is that it's dated I wish you could see the TV commercials that dug into DI back in '87 - what a hoot - and compare. I've just noticed the print TCM UK is showing in 2005 is lip-synced out, very wobbly Rosza music track, fading and ageing fast - worse than my 1987 video tape (maybe logically). They're supposed to be encouraging people to enjoy the classics but they won't do that with such inferior screening copies. Dear TCM UK, this is an impressive iconic film - it deserves a billion dollar remaster authorised by the Library of Congress, not repeatedly trotting out unimpressive cheap worn dupes to fill those 2 hour slots.
Everything about DI from the acting, production, direction, and music is superbly dignified and is as "close to perfection" as human beings are probably allowed to get with this form of Art - especially with the more limited technology at their disposal in '44. When most films from now are long forgotten and dated DI will still be getting re-runs on TV and art-house cinemas - God and remasters willing - that is the fact of it.
Fortunia Bonanova certainly was fortunate to have appeared in bit parts in 2 of the best films ever made - Citizen Kane the other.
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